Ahimsa

Ahimsa

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia –

Ahimsa (Ahinsa) (ahiṃsā, avihiṃsā) means ‘not to injure‘ and ‘compassion‘ and refers to a key virtue in Hinduism and Jainism. The word is derived from the Sanskrit root hiṃs – to strike; hiṃsā is injury or harm, a-hiṃsā is the opposite of this, i.e. cause no injury, do no harm. Ahimsa is also referred to as nonviolence, and it applies to all living beings—including all animals—in ancient Indian religions.

Ahimsa is one of the cardinal virtues and an important tenet of Jainism and Hinduism, and in Buddhism where it is the first of the five precepts. Ahimsa is a multidimensional concept, inspired by the premise that all living beings have the spark of the divine spiritual energy; therefore, to hurt another being is to hurt oneself. Ahimsa has also been related to the notion that any violence has karmic consequences. While ancient scholars of Hinduism pioneered and over time perfected the principles of Ahimsa, the concept reached an extraordinary status in the ethical philosophy of Jainism. Most popularly, Mahatma Gandhi strongly believed in the principle of ahimsa.

Ahimsa’s precept of ’cause no injury’ includes one’s deeds, words, and thoughts. Classical literature of Hinduism such as Mahabharata and Ramayana, as well as modern scholars debate principles of Ahimsa when one is faced with war and situations requiring self-defence. The historic literature from India and modern discussions have contributed to theories of Just War, and theories of appropriate self-defence.

– From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 

Mahatma Gandhi strongly believed in the principle of ahimsa.

Google search –

For Gandhi, ahimsa means: non-injury, nonviolence, non-harm, the renunciation of the will to kill and the intention to hurt any living thing, the abstention from hostile thought, word or deed, and compassion for all living creatures.

– Google search

Albert Schweitzer strongly believed in the principle of ahimsa.

http://www.schweitzerfellowship.org

excerpt –

Reverence for Life is a translation of the German “Ehrfurcht vor dem Leben”, and the word “reverence” is really not quite adequate. It lacks the German word’s overtones of awe before an overwhelming force. “Ehrfurcht” is respect carried to ultimate lengths. It holds reverberations of the feelings we experience on the tops of high mountains, in a storm at sea, or in a tropical tornado. This was the element that the African jungle gave to Schweitzer’s thinking―the acknowledgement of immensity and of overwhelming power―the force of continuing life and ever-present death in the vastness of nature.

– excerpt

For months on end, I lived in a continual state of mental agitation. Without the least success I concentrated – even during my daily work at the hospital – on the real nature of the affirmation of life and of ethics, and on the question of what they have in common. I was wandering about in a thicket where no path was to be found. I was pushing against an iron door that would not yield….In that mental state, I had to take a long journey up the river . . . Lost in thought, I sat on deck of the barge, struggling to find the elementary and universal concept of the ethical that I had not discovered in any philosophy. I covered sheet after sheet with disconnected sentences merely to concentrate on the problem. Two days passed. Late on the third day, at the very moment when, at sunset, we were making our way through a herd of hippopotamuses, there flashed upon my mind, unforeseen and unsought, the phrase : “Reverence for Life”. [lang|de| Ehrfurcht vor dem Leben] The iron door had yielded. The path in the thicket had become visible. Now I had found my way to the principle in which affirmation of the world and ethics are joined together!” — Albert Schweitzer

“He [Albert Schweitzer] is the only Westerner who has had a moral effect on this generation comparable to Gandhi’s. As in the case of Gandhi, the extent of this effect is overwhelmingly due to the example he gave by his own life’s work.” Albert Einstein

reverence noun:
deep respect for someone or something.
ARCHAIC
a gesture indicative of respect; a bow or curtsy.
a title given to a member of the clergy, or used in addressing them.

reverence verb:
regard or treat with deep respect.
Origin: from Latin reverentia, from revereri ‘stand in awe of’ (see revere).

Andrew Harvey in The Way of Passion –

One day Rumi asked one of his young, snotty disciples to give him an enormous amount of rich and delicious food. This young disciple was rather alarmed because he thought Rumi was living an acetic lifestyle. Rumi used to pray all night and hardly eat anything. The disciple thought, “Aha, now I’ve really got the master – what he really wants is to go off somewhere secretly and eat all this food!” So he decided to follow Rumi. He followed him through the streets of Konya, out into the fields, out into yet further fields. Then he saw Rumi go into a ruined tomb. “I am finally going to unmask his pretensions,” the young disciple thought. But what he found was a totally exhausted bitch with six puppies, and Rumi was feeding the dog with his own hands so that she could survive to feed her children. Rumi knew that the disciple was following him, of course, and turned to him smiling and said, “See?” The disciple, extremely moved said, “But how on earth did you know that she was here? How did you know that she was hungry? This is miles away from where you are!” Rumi laughed and laughed, “When you have become awake your ears are so acute that they can hear the cries of a sparrow ten thousand miles away.”

– Andrew Harvey in The Way of Passion

 

Modern man rarely has a reverence for life, because it requires humility as a lifestyle; not feeling superior to any other life.

This concept of reverence for life started to develop in Animism, was refined by certain types of Shamanism, and was carried forward into some of the old classical religions like Taoism, Hinduism, Shinto, Buddhism, and Judaism.

Ahimsa is the first precept in Taoism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism.

Taoism is the first (religious?) practice where dualism shows up. Daoists hold that this is not an essential duality, but rather two mutually constituting and intricately linked parts of a whole, both of which are at all times present in all things and either may only achieve temporary dominance.

Hinduism has deep roots and a well documented history about it’s development.

In 539 BCE Persian king Cyrus the Great allowed Exiled Judeans to return to Judah, temple worship was restored, the scriptures were revised from a Judean perspective, and other worship practices like Shamanism were declared strictly forbidden idol worship.

Animism
Description: Animism is the religious belief that objects, places and creatures all possess a distinct spiritual essence. Potentially, animism perceives all things—animals, plants, rocks, rivers, weather systems, human handiwork and perhaps even words—as animated and alive. – Wikipedia

The basic original duality:

Light – presence of all visible energy – represented by the color white.

Darkness – absence of all visible energy – represented by the color black.

Key concepts of duality:

White – wholeness – good – love – nonphysical reality – extrasensory

Black – separateness- evil – fear – physical reality – sensory

I list duality just to show you that all choice is basically between light or darkness.

There are wide extremes in the practice of ahimsa:

The small practice is non-violence; just do no harm.

The wholeness practice of ’cause no injury’ includes one’s deeds, words, and thoughts; such as compassion when someone or something is hurting, action is required.

Reflect on this:

Rumi laughed and laughed, “When you have become awake your ears are so acute that they can hear the cries of a sparrow ten thousand miles away.”

Belief

Belief

“To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.” Socrates

“This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.” William Shakespeare in Act I, Scene III, of his play Hamlet

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

“To be nobody-but-yourself — in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else — means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight.” The Courage to Be Yourself: E.E. Cummings on Art, Life, and Being Unafraid to Feel

“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” E.E. Cummings

What is your belief about belief?

Do you have religious beliefs, cultural beliefs, political beliefs, or fill-in-the-blank beliefs?

Do you believe that you share a belief system with a group of people? Does anyone else have Your Belief System?

I am going to shock you: there is no “WE” believe about anything; there is only “I” believe or “I” do not believe. It is Your Belief System! Your belief is something only you can hold.

Your Belief System is your set of assumptions, concepts, values, and practices that have been imprinted on your subconscious mind.

Your Belief System is your intention toward yourself that has been imprinted on your subconscious mind.

The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz-

The Belief System is like a Book of Law that rules our mind. Without question, whatever is in that Book of Law is our truth… There is something in our minds that judges everybody and everything, including the weather, the dog, the cat — everything. The Inner Judge uses what is in our Book of Law to judge everything we do and don’t do, everything we think and don’t think, and everything we feel and don’t feel… Every time we do something that goes against the Book of Law, the Judge says we are guilty, we need to be punished, and we should be ashamed…
There is another part of us that receives the judgments, and this part is called the Victim. The Victim carries the blame, the guilt, and the shame…

And this is all based on a Belief System that we never chose to believe. These beliefs are so strong, that even years later when we are exposed to new concepts and try to make our own decisions, we find that these beliefs still control our lives.

Whatever goes against the Book of Law will make you feel a funny sensation in your solar plexus, and it’s called FEAR…

-The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

You build Your Belief System CHOICE by CHOICE, but the question is “Is it your choice or somebody else’s choice?”

WHY (to set intent) is the question that should be asked and answered before any action is taken. It is what goes on inside of you; this is the most important thing in your life; where your value comes from.

Deliberate action turns knowledge into practical wisdom. © 2016 Russel Steffy

Deliberate action: The conscious intentional process of doing something.

Practical wisdom: the actual repeated application or use of valued ideas, beliefs, or methods; as opposed to theories
.
Deliberate Choice (done consciously and intentionally); every moment you choose what you see, hear, touch, taste, and smell. You choose how to move your body. You also get to choose value to what is happening to create an experience.

Do you choose consciously and intentionally?

If you do not make a deliberate choice to control the input, you will go into automatic mode and accept input from outside as valid. Then Religions, Political Parties, TV advertisements, and etc. get to program subconscious intention; they create your beliefs for you.
It is My Belief System and I want it to be a reflection of who I really am; that is why knowing myself and being true to myself are so important. Then it is Deliberate Belief.

Deliberate Belief (created consciously and intentionally by you!), do you now see WHY this is important?

Wasted Life

Wasted Life

The Golden Rule

Matthew 7:12 ‘All things, therefore, whatever you may will that men may be doing to you, so also do to them, for this is the law and the prophets.

This is what I call the Law of Collectivity – you love god- you love yourself-you love your neighbour (everything close by). The larger your love collective the closer you are to the ONE.

Definition of collectivity
1: the quality or state of being collective
2: a collective whole

collective – formed by collecting

What are you collecting in your life? Are you happy with your collection? Is your collection based on love or fear?

Here we have what I call the Tale of Two Gates:

Matthew 7:13 ‘Go you in through the strait{cramped, constricted} gate, because wide is the gate, and broad the way that is leading to the destruction, and many are those going in through it;
Matthew 7:14 how strait{cramped, constricted} is the gate, and compressed the way that is leading to the life, and few are those finding it!

strait στενός stenos sten-os’ ; narrow (from obstacles standing close about): – strait.

destruction ἀπώλεια apōleia ap-o’-li-a ; ruin or loss (physical, spiritual or eternal): – damnable (-nation), destruction, die, perdition, X perish, pernicious ways, waste.

This Greek word and other derivatives of it are typically used in the New Testament with a sense of of ruin, loss, or being lost. Loss can occur in many ways and take on many forms, but nothing is ever annihilated. A physical form may disappear; but the energy/spirit pattern moves on to take form later; in-form to out-of-form back to in-form… in a never ending cycle.

Luke 19:10 For the Son of man came to seek and save that which was lost.

that which was lost ἀπόλλυμι apollumi ap-ol’-loo-mee ; to destroy fully (reflexively to perish, or lose), literally or figuratively: – destroy, die, lose, mar, perish.

Destruction.—The word implies, not annihilation, but waste (Matthew_26:8; Mark_14:4), perdition, i.e. the loss of all that makes existence precious. I question whether a single passage can be adduced in which it means, in relation to material things, more than the breaking up of their outward form and beauty, or, in spiritual things, more than what may be described as the wretchedness of a wasted life (Plumptre).

A strait (very narrow) gate is what Jesus means to be seeking spirit.

Wide is the gate, and broad the way is what Jesus means to be seeking flesh.

A strait (very narrow) gate means you have to drop all the clutter of life to enter. This is very hard, takes a lot of practice, and few are willing to make the effort.

You must set aside the flesh by quieting the physical mind to get to the spirit.

You quiet the physical mind with still or moving meditation; things like Yoga, sustained conscious physical exercise, conscious awareness, conscious breathing, and many more.

Here are two mind pictures:

The flesh mind is like a lake or pond with a stiff breeze blowing and full of waves. We cannot see the reflection of the Cosmos on the surface while our self-centered thoughts clamor for our attention.

The spirit mind is like the same lake or pond at a still, calm moment. We have set our self-centered thoughts aside and we can now see the reflection of the Cosmos on the surface and commune with it.

Here is another look at the same theme as strait gate:

Matthew 6:6 “But when you* are praying, enter into your private room, and having shut your door, pray to your Father, the [One] in secret, and your Father, the [One] seeing in secret, will reward you in the open.

You have often heard that there is safety in numbers. There is only safety in the ONE. There is only ONE power and presence in the universe. I am just a small essence of that ONE; but I AM a part of ONE.

your private room ταμεῖον tameion tam-i’-on ; a dispensary or magazine, that is, a chamber on the ground floor or interior of an Oriental house (generally used for storage or privacy, a spot for retirement): – secret chamber, closet, storehouse.

secret κρυπτός kruptos kroop-tos’ ; concealed, that is, private: – hid (-den), inward [-ly], secret.

Judging Others

Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
Matthew 7:2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
Matthew 7:3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
Matthew 7:4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
Matthew 7:5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

mote κάρφος karphos kar’-fos ; a dry twig or straw: – mote.

beam δοκός dokos dok-os’ ; a stick of timber: – beam.

How many times have you heard yourself or someone else say “boy that person needs a lot of help?” The truth is we all need a lot of help!

A solution that we propose to someone else that does not include that person’s ideas about what is best for them; is not a solution at all…only a judgement.

We can never even think about really helping others; until we fix ourselves.

Matthew 7:6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

holy ἅγιος hagios hag’-ee-os ; sacred (physically pure, morally blameless or religious, ceremonially consecrated): – (most) holy (one, thing), saint.

pearls μαργαρίτης margaritēs mar-gar-ee’-tace ; a pearl: – pearl.

The Parable of the Pearl of Great Value

Matthew 13:45-46 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.

Matthew is using a simile to describe the kingdom of heaven…a pearl is a perfect simile because a fine pearl is a valuable treasure that needs no finishing by man. It comes to us complete and lustrous created by God through nature, as is the kingdom of heaven, which only God could create and perfect.

Luke 17:20-21 And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of Elohim should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of Elohim cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here or, lo there for, behold, the kingdom of Elohim is within you.

Genesis 1:27 So Elohim created man in his own image, in the image of Elohim created he him; male and female created he them.

Matthew 6:9-10 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

The kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of Elohim are the image or spirit of Elohim that is at the center of your being.

That which is holy and your pearls refers to the image or spirit of Elohim that is at the center of our being. The dogs or swine refer to the flesh personified as a dog or swine. Both dogs and swine were unclean animals. The only varieties that would have been in a Jewish region would be feral and wild. Attacks by wild dogs and wild swine were well known.

This is the ultimate wasted life; using your spiritual energies only to fulfill the wild selfish desires of the flesh. If you pardon the pun; “they will only come back to bite you”.

Reflect on this:

Matthew 7:6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

Tale of Two Trees

 

Tale of Two Trees

E: “E” stands for Elohist, the name given to the author(s) who referred to God as “Elohim.” In addition to a fair bit of Exodus and a little bit of Numbers, the “E” author(s) are believed to be the ones who wrote the Bible’s first creation account in Genesis chapter one. This is the oldest source tradition.

First creation account:

Genesis 1:26-31 And Elohim said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So Elohim created man in his own image, in the image of Elohim created he him; male and female created he them. And Elohim blessed them, and Elohim said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth. And Elohim said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so. And Elohim saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

 

J: “J” is believed to be the second author(s) of the first five books (much of Genesis and some of Exodus), including the creation account in Genesis chapter two (the detailed one where Adam is created first and there’s a serpent). This name comes from “Jahwe,” the German translation of “YHWH” or “Yahweh,” the name this author used for God. Some of the literary devices and turns of phrase that J uses could only have been picked up sometime after 600 B.C., during the Jewish captivity in Babylon.

Second creation account:

Genesis 2:8-9 And Yahweh Elohim planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. And out of the ground made Yahweh Elohim to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2:15-25 And Yahweh Elohim took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. And Yahweh Elohim commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. And Yahweh Elohim said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for himAnd out of the ground Yahweh Elohim formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. And Yahweh Elohim caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which Yahweh Elohim had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

Genesis 3:1-24 Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which Yahweh Elohim had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath Elohim said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, Elohim hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For Elohim doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as Elohim, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. And they heard the voice of Yahweh Elohim walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of Yahweh Elohim amongst the trees of the garden. And Yahweh Elohim called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. And Yahweh Elohim said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat. And Yahweh Elohim said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living. Unto Adam also and to his wife did Yahweh Elohim make coats of skins, and clothed them. And Yahweh Elohim said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever: Therefore Yahweh Elohim sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.

End of Creation Accounts

For example, “Eve” first appears in J’s text when she is made from the rib of Adam. “Rib” is “ti” in Babylonian, and it’s associated with the goddess Tiamat, the mother deity. A lot of Babylonian mythology and astrology (including the stuff about Lucifer, the Morning Star) snuck into the Bible in this way via the captivity.

The “rotten-to-the-core” dogma of original sin; Christianity’s version of the Tale of Two Trees on steroids. Take notice the woman was never given the command directly by Yahweh Elohim; “Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”

The tree of the knowledge of good and evil, this is what Jesus called “flesh”.

Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance…Confucius

The tree of life, this is what Jesus called “spirit”.

See the fall of man is really a fall from living the duality of flesh and spirit. He chose to live only in the flesh; choosing to be separate from all other sentient beings and being cut off from spirit.

To choose between good and evil requires judgment. Judge not, otherwise you will never become one with the universe. With fragments you will jump to conclusions. Once you judge you will stop growing. Judgment means a stagnant state of mind.

Since man was “driven” from the garden and the the tree of life (spirit); the burning question is “How do I find my way back to God?” Conveniently religions have arisen and say they can help us find our way back to God. The real secret is we don’t need religion to find God. God never left us; we left God. Elohim said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness”; this essence is still inside of us waiting for us to return to spirit.

Judaism like many other old religions has deep roots in shamanism. The Priestly class considered being Jewish and being a shaman as not compatible and that shamanism is part of Avodah Zarah (Idol worship and therefore forbidden). So after temple worship was instituted shamanism was “driven” out of official Judaism.

Take notice of christian missionaries coming to america and trying to “save” the savages; driving the shamanism out is more like it. Take notice the white Europeans coming to the new world with a gun in the right hand and a bible in the left hand bent on total conquest; body and soul of the American Indian. Take notice of the US government tearing children out of families, telling the parents that they no longer can practice shamanism, and sending the children to schools where they would be taught a superior way of worship (christian).

There has not been a freedom of worship for each person in the United States. Indigenous persons have been systematically “driven” from their shamanic way of worship.

I hear some evangelical Christians talk about their religious persecution in this country; cut me a break.

 

Study history and you will find American Indians finally got religious freedom August 11, 1978 with the American Indian Religious Freedom Act. The American Indian Religious Freedom Act, Public Law No. 95-341, 92 Stat. 469 (Aug. 11, 1978) (commonly abbreviated to AIRFA), codified at 42 U.S.C. § 1996, is a United States federal law, enacted by joint resolution of the Congress in 1978.

Follow the link if you are willing to learn:

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/blogs/national-museum-american-indian/2018/11/30/native-perspectives-american-indian-religious-freedom-act/

Look at all the other places in the world where indigenous persons have been systematically “driven” from their shamanic way of worship by people who had a superior way of worship.

See the common theme; Humanity never seems to learn it’s lesson until it’s almost too late.

 

Martin Seligman Professor and Director, Positive Psychology Center, University of Pennsylvania; Author, Authentic Happiness
Quote-

The “rotten-to-the-core” assumption about human nature espoused so widely in the social sciences and the humanities is wrong. This premise has its origins in the religious dogma of original sin and was dragged into the secular twentieth century by Freud, reinforced by two world wars, the Great Depression, the cold war, and genocides too numerous to list. The premise holds that virtue, nobility, meaning, and positive human motivation generally are reducible to, parasitic upon, and compensations for what is really authentic about human nature: selfishness, greed, indifference, corruption and savagery. The only reason that I am sitting in front of this computer typing away rather than running out to rape and kill is that I am “compensated,” zipped up, and successfully defending myself against these fundamental underlying impulses.
In spite of its widespread acceptance in the religious and academic world, there is not a shred of evidence, not an iota of data, which compels us to believe that nobility and virtue are somehow derived from negative motivation. On the contrary, I believe that evolution has favored both positive and negative traits, and many niches have selected for morality, co-operation, altruism, and goodness, just as many have also selected for murder, theft, self-seeking, and terrorism.
More plausible than the rotten-to-the-core theory of human nature is the dual aspect theory that the strengths and the virtues are just as basic to human nature as the negative traits: that negative motivation and emotion have been selected for by zero-sum-game survival struggles, while virtue and positive emotion have been selected for by positive sum game sexual selection. These two overarching systems sit side by side in our central nervous system ready to be activated by privation and thwarting, on the one hand, or by abundance and the prospect of success, on the other.

-Quote

The choice is yours:

1. negative motivation and emotion have been selected for by zero-sum-game (flesh) self
2. virtue and positive emotion have been selected for by positive sum game (spirit) common good
There are only two choices. There is no none of the above; these two sit side by side in our central nervous system waiting to be activated…You WILL choose one or the other.

First Cause

Non-Theistic

Tao Te Ching Chapter One-

Tao (The Way) that can be spoken of is not the Constant Tao’
The name that can be named is not a Constant Name.
Nameless, is the origin of Heaven and Earth;
The named is the Mother of all things.
Thus, the constant void enables one to observe the true essence.
The constant being enables one to see the outward manifestations.
These two come paired from the same origin.
But when the essence is manifested,
It has a different name.
This same origin is called “The Profound Mystery.”
As profound the mystery as It can be,
It is the Gate to the essence of all life.

-Tao Te Ching Chapter One

Theistic

We start with the first two words in Genesis 1:1:

ראשׁית rê’shîyth ray-sheeth’ the first principal thing

אלהים ‘ĕlôhîym el-o-heem’ the Supreme One

Eloheem is a plural masculine noun used with singular masculine verbs. This is contrary to rules of Hebrew grammar, but done on purpose..

The plural is used to show majesty, honor, or fullness.

One not as a separate entity; but as Complete Collective Consciousness (BEING).

Gen 1:1-3 Created by the Elohim were the heavens and the earth. Yet the earth became a chaos and vacant, and darkness was on the surface of the submerged chaos. Yet the spirit of the Elohim is vibrating over the surface of the water. And saying is the Elohim, “Become light!” And it is becoming light.

Spirit רוּח rûach roo’-akh wind, breath, a region of the sky, mind

Light אור ‘ôr ore illumination; to be or make luminous (be, give, or show light) enlightened, set on fire, shine.

Let enlightenment or illumination become; this is the first action of the Supreme One.

This is the same principal that Buddha called enlightenment or illumination.

I see now that all creatures have perfect enlightenment – but they do not know it. Buddha

When you came into this world; your mind was totally open to a world of endless possibilities. You had no knowledge, prejudice, or belief; total innocence and no ego. Mystics and Sages have called this state “Beginner’s Mind”.

Matthew 18:1-4 In that hour [or, At that time] the disciples approached Jesus, saying, “So who is greatest in the kingdom of the heavens?” And Jesus having summoned a young child, He set him in the middle of them and said, “Positively, I say to you*, unless you* are turned around [fig., changed inwardly] and become like such young children, by no means shall you* enter into the kingdom of the heavens. “Therefore, whoever will humble himself like this young child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of the heavens.

Tao Te Ching Chapter Ten
Excerpt-
Can one unite the body and the spirit as one and embrace the “Oneness” without departing from the great Tao?
Can one achieve harmony with such gentleness by holding on to the true spirit within as if the innocence of an infant?
-Excerpt

John 3:3-7 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most positively, I say to you, unless someone is born from above [or, born again], he is not able to see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus says to Him, “How is a person able to be born, being old? He is not able to enter into the womb of his mother a second time and to be born, is he?” Jesus answered, “Most positively, I say to you, unless someone is born from water and Spirit, he is not able to enter into the kingdom of God. The [thing] having been born from the flesh is flesh, and the [thing] having been born from the Spirit is spirit. “Stop marveling that I said to you, ‘It is necessary [for] you* to be born from above [or, born again].'”

Later in your life you repent and make the choice to open up to “Beginner’s Mind”; this time not in total innocence and setting aside ego (to be born from above [or, born again]).

The named is what Jesus called Flesh.
The nameless is what Jesus called Spirit.

When we define or name something; we give up our search to understand it. Our “flesh mode” is happy just to have a superficial relationship with things. Our “spirit mode” desires to exist with things; to examine all of it’s interconnections with all other things.

Tao Te Ching Chapter Sixteen
Excerpt-
Human must achieve the ultimate void and maintain calmness with sincerity in order to observe the growth and flourish of all beings.
It is in this way that one can understand the law of nature.
All things and beings will eventually return to the original source.
This is called “peace.”
“Peace” means returning to one’s original nature.
This original nature is the eternal law. To know the nature’s law is to be enlightened.
-Excerpt

We need to return to the nameless and undefined; “the ultimate void”.

What can not be seen; can be demonstrated.
You can not see the wind; yet the rustling leaves demonstrate the wind.

There is a way of knowing that is higher than logic and reason.

Human must achieve the ultimate void and maintain calmness with sincerity in order to observe the growth and flourish of all beings. -Tao Te Ching Chapter Sixteen

Phoney Relationships

A lot of relationships these days are “Facebook” instead of “face-to-face”.

So are we more willing to get followers on our cell phones, instead of friends face-to-face? Therefore the term “Phoney Relationships”

John 7:24 “Stop judging according to appearance, _but_ be judging the righteous judgment.”

Judging – Greek κρίνω (krinō) Properly to distinguish, that is, decide (mentally or judicially); by implication to try, condemn, punish: – avenge, conclude, condemn, damn, decree, determine, esteem, judge, go to (sue at the) law, ordain, call in question, sentence to, think.

Appearance – Greek ὄψις (opsis) ;properly sight (the act), that is, (by implication) the visage, an external show: – appearance, countenance, face.

Righteous – Greek δίκαιος (dikaios) From δίκη (dikē); equitable (in character or act); by implication innocent, holy (absolutely or relatively): – just, meet, right (-eous).

Greek δίκη (dikē) ; right (as self-evident), that is, justice (the principle, a decision, or its execution): – judgment, punish, vengeance.

In the meaning of the Greek words:
Stop distinguishing or deciding; by sight or an external show, but be distinguishing or deciding with equitable (considering innocent, holy) or right (as self-evident) judgement.

So if we judge something as pleasing to our own eyes rather than judging it in a fair and impartial way; we are treating it in an unholy fashion? Do we treat ourselves in an unholy fashion?

New York Post-

1 in 5 millennials are lonely and have ‘no friends’: survey
By Hannah Frishberg August 2, 2019 | 5:19pm
All the followers, none of the friends.
Social media-savvy millennials make up the loneliest generation in America, according to a new survey by market research firm YouGov.
The poll of 1,254 adults aged 18 and older found that 27 percent of millennials have no close friends, 25 percent have no “acquaintances” and 22 percent — or 1 in 5 — have no buddies at all. This compares with only 9 percent of Baby Boomers and 15 percent of Gen Xers who reported having zero chums.
A third of the 20- and 30-somethings also reported feeling lonely often or always, compared with 20 percent of Gen Xers and 15 percent of boomers. (Sext-happy Gen Z was not included in the survey results, nor was the older Silent Generation.)
On the bright side, close to half — 49 percent — of millennials said they had one to four “close friends” and 70 percent said they had at least one “best friend.” Although, based on the other stats, that best friend is possibly their only friend.

-New York Post

CompuKol Communications LLC-

Defining Your Social Media Avatar
BY MICHAEL COHN · PUBLISHED · UPDATED
Avatar is defined as manifestation, appearance, or incarnation. In terms of social media in today’s world, your Avatar is your identity. You choose to make your Avatar whatever you want it to be. It is what you project to others.
There are many people who have a different image online than in person. They allow other members of their social media communities to see them as an enhanced version of themselves. Of course, there is nothing wrong with putting your best foot forward and showing other people the best of what and who you are. We all try to do that. Sometimes people are no keenly aware that what they say and how they portray themselves online and in person does not necessarily have to be the same thing.

-CompuKol Communications LLC

To find out about the “Real” person ignore the Avatar and ask them about their “Browser” histories.

I want to know the “Real” you; not the enhanced version of you!

“To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man” says Polonius in Hamlet. – William Shakespeare

“To thine own self be true”. We hear this quote and see it emblazoned on many items for sale today, but do we stop to really reflect on what it means?

If you are really true to yourself will you make a “Phoney” Social Media Avatar of yourself?

Schadenfreude

scha·den·freu·de /ˈSHädənˌfroidə/ noun: Schadenfreude; noun: schadenfreude
pleasure derived by someone from another person’s misfortune.
Origin : German Schadenfreude, from Schaden ‘harm’ + Freude ‘joy’.

Schadenfreude From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia –

Schadenfreude ; lit. ‘harm-joy’) is the experience of pleasure, joy, or self-satisfaction that comes from learning of or witnessing the troubles, failures, or humiliation of another.
Schadenfreude is a complex emotion, where rather than feeling sympathy towards someone’s misfortune, schadenfreude evokes joyful feelings that take pleasure from watching someone fail. This emotion is displayed more in children than adults; however, adults also experience schadenfreude, though generally concealed.

– Schadenfreude From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Google search –

Schadenfreude is borrowed from German; it is a compound of Schaden, “damage, harm”, and Freude, “joy”. The German word was first mentioned in English texts in 1852 and 1867, and first used in English running text in 1895. In German, it was first attested in the 1740s.
She noted Schadenfreude as an example of such a word, the pleasure that one derives from another person’s misfortune, which is from German Schaden, harm, and Freude, joy. She said an English equivalent does exist — epicaricacy. … Schadenfreude I know it is called. Or epicaricacy, as the English will have it.
epicaricacy Noun
(rare) Rejoicing at or derivation of pleasure from the misfortunes of others.
Usage notes : The word is mentioned in some early dictionaries, but there is little or no evidence of actual usage until it was picked up by various “interesting word” websites around the turn of the twenty-first century.
Origin From Ancient Greek ἐπί (epí, “upon”) + χαρά (khará, “joy”) + κακός (kakós, “evil”).

The Japanese have a saying: “The misfortune of others tastes like honey.” The French speak of joie maligne, a diabolical delight in other people’s suffering. In Danish it is skadefryd; in Hebrew, simcha la-ed; in Mandarin, xìng-zāi-lè-huò; in Russian, zloradstvo; and for the Melanesians who live on the remote Nissan Atoll in Papua New Guinea, it is banbanam. Two millennia ago, the Romans spoke of malevolentia. Earlier still, the Greeks described epichairekakia (literally epi, over, chairo, rejoice, kakia, disgrace). A study in Würzburg in Germany carried out in 2015 found that football fans smiled more quickly and broadly when their rival team missed a penalty, than when their own team scored.
“To see others suffer does one good,” wrote the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. “This is a hard saying, but a mighty, human, all-too-human principle.”

– Google search

Schadenfreude – a very good word for a very bad state of consciousness.

The philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer called it “an infallible sign of a thoroughly bad heart and profound moral worthlessness.”

RC Trench, the archbishop of Dublin, mentioned it in “On the Study of Words”. For Trench, the mere existence of the word was unholy and fearful, a “mournful record of the strange wickednesses which the genius of man has invented”.

In the 1890s, animal-rights campaigner Frances Power Cobbe wrote a manifesto entitled Schadenfreude, identifying the emotion with the bloodlust of boys torturing stray cats for fun.

Do you notice any Schadenfreude around you? Especially examine some of the world’s most influential people – look for “an infallible sign of a thoroughly bad heart and profound moral worthlessness.”
Do you experience any Schadenfreude inside you? Reflect on your intentions toward the world and people around you.

Schadenfreude has been called “empathy’s shadow”, casting the two as antithetical.

This is why Buddha emphasized compassion in his teachings. Compassion is feeling with someone; Schadenfreude is feeling against someone, even though the person appears to be enjoying the feeling. See how devious the human mind can be.

Psychologist Simon Baron-Cohen has pointed out that psychopaths are not only detached from other people’s suffering but even enjoy it: “The Germans have a word for this,” writes Baron-Cohen.

So, psychopaths think about other people’s suffering with the purpose of getting enjoyment from it. How close are each of us to becoming psychopaths?

So, is your “Schadenfreude” consciousness stronger or your “empathy” consciousness stronger?

All emotions are “cognitive” – in other words, not simply reactions , but complex cognitive processes requiring us to evaluate our relationship with the universe around us and respond accordingly.

Dostoyevsky knew that schadenfreude and sympathy are not either/or responses, but can both be experienced in the same moment. In Crime and Punishment, Marmeladov is brought, bloodied and unconscious, into the St Petersburg tenement where he lives following an accident, all the residents crowd round. They experience, wrote Dostoyevsky, “that strange sense of inner satisfaction that always manifests itself, even among the victim’s nearest and dearest, when someone is afflicted by a sudden catastrophe; a sensation that not a single one of us is proof against, however sincere our feelings of pity and sympathy”.

Reflect on this – “that strange sense of inner satisfaction that always manifests itself, even among the victim’s nearest and dearest, when someone is afflicted by a sudden catastrophe; a sensation that not a single one of us is proof against, however sincere our feelings of pity and sympathy”.

Conflict

Conflict

conflict noun Definition of conflict (Entry 1 of 2)
1 : FIGHT, BATTLE, WAR
2a : competitive or opposing action of incompatibles : antagonistic state or action (as of divergent ideas, interests, or persons)
b : mental struggle resulting from incompatible or opposing needs, drives, wishes, or external or internal demands
3 : the opposition of persons or forces that gives rise to the dramatic action in a drama or fiction

conflict verb Definition of conflict (Entry 2 of 2)
intransitive verb
1 : to be different, opposed, or contradictory : to fail to be in agreement or accord
2 archaic : to contend in warfare

I was raised in a FUNDAMENTAL EVANGELICAL family where I was taught that GOD is omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, etc.

I was also taught that there is a great cosmic conflict between good and evil; GOD and Satan.

You get the idea; then how does this happen?:

excerpt from belief letter to my parents-

The concept of Jesus Christ as the Redeemer of mankind and having paid a Ransom for our lives is puzzling. A ransom is a ‘consideration paid or demanded for the redemption of a captured person’ (Webster). This presupposes that GOD somehow lost a battle, lost a bartering deal, or was robbed of his family by someone and had to pay to get them back. Is there an evil Being equal to GOD and can demand a Ransom from GOD? I do not think so.

-excerpt from belief letter to my parents

“And if there was no Fall, what then of the need for Redemption? What god was offended and by whom? Some especially touchy cave bear whose skull had been improperly enshrined?” ― Joseph Campbell

“Every act has both good and evil results. Every act in life yields pairs of opposites in its results. The best we can do is lean toward the light, toward the harmonious relationships that come from compassion with suffering, from understanding the other person.” ― Joseph Campbell

“is there not some point of wisdom beyond the conflicts of illusion and truth by which lives can be put back together again? That is a prime question, I would say, of this hour in the bringing up of children.” ― Joseph Campbell, Myths to Live By

“The idea of Truth with capital “T”-that there is something called Truth that’s beyond the range of the relativity of the human mind trying to think-is what I call “the error of the found truth.” The trouble with all of these damned preachers is the error of the found truth. When they get that tremolo in the voice and tell you what God has said, you know you’ve got a faker.” ― Joseph Campbell

What I found is that there is no great cosmic conflict between good and evil; GOD and Satan. All I found are states of mind that exist within the mind of each individual human; this is where the conflict occurs. “Every act has both good and evil results” says Joseph Campbell. “There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so” says William Shakespeare in Hamlet.

So good and evil are just different opinions or points of view.

How about the conflict between TRUTH and lies. This does not happen because TRUTH does not conflict with anything. TRUTH just exists; touch a tree, hug a pet, jump in a lake, this is energy or spirit (TRUTH) in-form. The tree, pet, or lake just exists; TRUTH is existence; existence is TRUTH. How does existence conflict with anything? A person is TRUTH exists or is REAL; an enemy is an untruth does not exist; Jesus Christ understood this concept when he said love your enemy. When you love an enemy the illusion drops and a REAL person is revealed; ah TRUTH is revealed.

We have so many illusions in our belief systems; “is there not some point of wisdom beyond the conflicts of illusion and truth by which lives can be put back together again?” asks Joseph Campbell.

TRUTH points out to us that the only source of conflict is lie to lie, untruth to untruth, or illusion to illusion.

Let that sink in…

Anytime you have had conflict in your life you can be sure that TRUTH has not been involved.

“The best we can do is lean toward the light, toward the harmonious relationships that come from compassion with suffering, from understanding the other person.” ― Joseph Campbell

USA the Promised Land for White Evangelical Christians

https://www.au.org/resources/publications/is-america-a-christian-nation

Americans United for Separation of Church and State

Excerpts-

WHAT WE BELIEVE

The wall of separation between church and state protects us all. It makes our country more fair, more equal and more inclusive.
We envision a nation where everyone can freely choose a faith and support it voluntarily, or follow no religious or spiritual path at all, and where the government does not promote religion over non-religion or favor one faith over another.

OUR MISSION

Americans United for Separation of Church and State is a nonpartisan educational and advocacy organization dedicated to advancing the separation of religion and government as the only way to ensure freedom of religion, including the right to believe or not believe, for all.

The U.S. Constitution is a wholly secular document. It contains no mention of Christianity or Jesus Christ. In fact, the Constitution refers to religion only twice in the First Amendment, which bars laws “respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” and in Article VI, which prohibits “religious tests” for public office. Both of these provisions are evidence that the country was not founded as officially Christian.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; — First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

While some of the country’s founders believed that the government should espouse Christianity, that viewpoint soon became a losing proposition. In Virginia, Patrick Henry argued in favor of tax support for Christian churches. But Henry and his cohorts were in the minority and lost that battle. Jefferson, James Madison and their allies among the state’s religious groups ended Virginia’s established church and helped pass the Virginia Statute for Religious Liberty, a 1786 law guaranteeing religious freedom to all.

We the General Assembly of Virginia do enact that no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer, on account of his religious opinions or belief; but that all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinions in matters of religion, and that the same shall in no wise diminish, enlarge, or affect their civil capacities. — Virginia Statute for Religious Liberty

Maryland representative Luther Martin said that a handful of delegates to the Constitutional Convention argued for formal recognition of Christianity in the Constitution, insisting that such language was necessary in order to “hold out some distinction between the professors of Christianity and downright infidelity or paganism.” But that view was not adopted, and the Constitution gave government no authority over religion. Article VI, which allows persons of all religious viewpoints to hold public office, was adopted by a unanimous vote. Through ratification of the First Amendment, observed Jefferson, the American people built a “wall of separation between church and state.”

Early national leaders understood that separation of church and state would be good for all faiths including Christianity. Jefferson rejoiced that Virginia had passed his religious freedom law, noting that it would ensure religious freedom for “the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mahometan, the Hindoo, the infidel of every denomination.”

Other early U.S. leaders echoed that view. President George Washington, in a famous 1790 letter to a Jewish congregation in Newport, R.I., celebrated the fact that Jews had full freedom of worship in America. Noted Washington, “All possess alike liberty of conscience and immunities of citizenship.”

Washington’s administration even negotiated a treaty with the Muslim rulers of north Africa that stated explicitly that the United States was not founded on Christianity. The pact, known as the Treaty with Tripoli, was approved unanimously by the Senate in 1797, under the administration of John Adams. Article 11 of the treaty states, “[T]he government of the United States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion….”

The government of the United States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion… — U.S. Treaty with Tripoli, 1797

A more accurate judicial view of the relationship between religion and government is described by Justice John Paul Stevens in his 1985 Wallace v. Jaffree ruling. Commenting on the constitutional right of all Americans to choose their own religious belief, Stevens wrote, “At one time it was thought that this right merely proscribed the preference of one Christian sect over another, but would not require equal respect for the conscience of the infidel, the atheist, or the adherent of a non-Christian faith such as Mohammedism or Judaism. But when the underlying principle has been examined in the crucible of litigation, the Court has unambiguously concluded that the individual freedom of conscience protected by the First Amendment embraces the right to select any religious faith or none at all.”
When the underlying principle has been examined in the crucible of litigation, the Court has unambiguously concluded that the individual freedom of conscience protected by the First Amendment embraces the right to select any religious faith or none at all. —Justice John Paul Stevens

A determined faction of Christians has fought against this wise and time-tested policy throughout our history. In the mid 19th century, several efforts were made to add specific references to Christianity to the Constitution. One group, the National Reform Association (NRA), pushed a “Christian nation” amendment in Congress in 1864. NRA members believed that the Civil War was divine punishment for failing to mention God in the Constitution and saw the amendment as a way to atone for that omission.

The NRA amendment called for “humbly acknowledging Almighty God as the source of all authority and power in civil government, the Lord Jesus Christ as the Ruler among the nations, [and] His revealed will as the supreme law of the land, in order to constitute a Christian government.” Ten years later, the House Judiciary Committee voted against its adoption. The committee noted “the dangers which the union between church and state had imposed upon so many nations of the Old World” and said in light of that it was felt “inexpedient to put anything into the Constitution which might be construed to be a reference to any religious creed or doctrine.”

Similar theocratic proposals resurfaced in Congress sporadically over the years. As late as 1950, a proposal was introduced in the Senate that would have added language to the Constitution that “devoutly recognizes the Authority and Law of Jesus Christ, Saviour and Ruler of nations, through whom are bestowed the blessings of liberty.” This amendment was never voted out of committee. Efforts to revive it in the early 1960s were unsuccessful.

-Excerpts

Do you think that George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, or John Adams were confused about the kind of nation they founded?

Who then wants to make the USA a Christian Nation?

Study this for yourself and come up with your own answers.

Look at other countries which have declared a state religion or a state of no religion. How has this worked out for them and their standing in the world?

Here is the lyrics to a song that has always bothered me (that God favors one group of people over another):

THIS LAND IS MINE aka THE EXODUS SONG
From the Film “Exodus” (1960/1961)
(Ernest Gold / Pat Boone)

Pat Boone – 1961
Ferrante & Teicher – 1961
Eddie Harris – 1961
Mantovani – 1961
Edith Piaf – 1961

Also recorded by :
Manny Albam; Aristakis; Chet Atkins; Bad Manners; Ray Barretto;
Count Basie; BBC Concert Orch.; Biddu Orch.; Boston Pops Orch.;
Ray Bryant; Gaylord Carter; Richard Clayderman; Luis Cobos;
The Duprees; The el Caminos; Percy Faith; Fantastic Strings;
Ernest Gold; Davy Graham; Grant Green; Slide Hampton;
Eddie Harris; Neal Hefti; Quincy Jones; The Lively Ones;
Maksim; Jiri Malasek; Junior Mance; Henry Mancini; Shelly Manne;
Mireille Mathieu; Tommy McCook; ….. and many others.

This land is mine, God gave this land to me
This brave and ancient land to me
And when the morning sun reveals her hills and plain
Then I see a land where children can run free

So take my hand and walk this land with me
And walk this lovely land with me
Though I am just a man, when you are by my side
With the help of God, I know I can be strong

Though I am just a man, when you are by my side
With the help of God, I know I can be strong

To make this land our home
If I must fight, I’ll fight to make this land our own
Until I die, this land is mine

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/god-gave-this-land-to-the_b_6250182

Marty Kaplan – This is a crosspost of my column in the Jewish Journal, where you can reach me at martyk@jewishjournal.com.

Don’t think a feeling

Really feel a feeling.

How do you do that? Well first you have to be in the right STATE.
There are only two STATES; IN-FORM and OUT-OF-FORM.

This is where energy and spirituality become one. Energy can neither be created or destroyed it just moves from IN-FORM to OUT-OF-FORM and back again.

A quick review:

Pre-Sense the key to Presence

Excerpt:

What is the spiritual meaning of heart?

The heart is the locus of physical and spiritual being, and represents the “central wisdom of feeling as opposed to the head-wisdom of reason” (Cooper, 82). It is compassion and understanding, life-giving and complex. It is a symbol for love. Often known as the seat of emotions, the heart is synonymous with affection.

This distinction is very important; THE HEART IS ALL ABOUT BEING and THE BRAIN IS ALL ABOUT THINKING. This is why we need to quiet the mind in order to Practice Presence in any moment. We need to return to the state before we had our brain which I call PRE-SENSE.

:Excerpt

IN-FORM is where I spend most of my time. This is the left hemisphere of my brain. This is where I live from my head; this is about my BRAIN and THINKING. This is what Jesus called the FLESH. I get sensations from my five senses and THINK about them. I analyze, compare, and rationalize. This is a state of separateness; my senses and thinking as one thing and the rest of the physical world as another. In this state I exist separately from all other things. In this state I can only collect IN-FORMation. This is where I just think a feeling.

OUT-OF-FORM is where I quiet my mind in order to Practice Presence in any moment. This is the right hemisphere of my brain. This is where I live from my heart; this is about my HEART and BEING. This is what Jesus called the SPIRIT. This is a state of oneness; where I exist with all ENERGY or SPIRIT. In this state I FEEL all ENERGY or SPIRIT. This is where I really feel a feeling.

Remember a time in your life when you were transported OUT-OF-FORM; when you experienced Rapture, Awe, or Wonder; being totally immersed in something outside of yourself; where time and space did not exist. It could have been a breath-taking sunrise or sunset; where in that moment only you and the sunrise or sunset existed with each other.

This is what I call RAW (Rapture, Awe, or Wonder) living!